Depth-averaging effects on hydraulic head for media with stochastic hydraulic conductivity

Water Resources Research
By:  and 

Links

Abstract

Hydraulic conductivity of a porous medium frequently is considered to be a single realization of a three-dimensional spatial stochastic process. The most common observations of flow in porous media are hydraulic-head measurements obtained from wells which are screened over extensive sections of the medium. These measurements represent, approximately, a one-dimensional spatial average of the actual three-dimensional head distribution, the actual head distribution being a stochastic process resulting from flow through a random hydraulic-conductivity field. This paper examines, via ensemble averages, the effect of such spatial averages of groundwater flow on the spatial autocovariance function for a simple, yet viable, stochastic model of a bounded medium. The model is taken to be three-dimensional flow in a medium that is bounded above and below and in which the hydraulic conductivity is a second-order stationary stochastic process. Spatial averaging of the hydraulic heads is considered to take place over the entire thickness of the medium. Ensemble variances and autocorrelations for depth-averaged heads are computed for the resulting two-dimensional flow system and compared with those from a fully three-dimensional flow system.

Additional publication details

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Depth-averaging effects on hydraulic head for media with stochastic hydraulic conductivity
Series title Water Resources Research
DOI 10.1029/WR023i004p00561
Volume 23
Issue 4
Year Published 1987
Language English
Publisher American Geophysical Union
Description 10 p.
First page 561
Last page 570